Classroom observation represents a measurement approach used to characterize teaching quality through the use of an observation protocol. This entry briefly reviews the history of how classroom observations have been used and then considers research that examines the design, reliability, and validity of classroom observations. This entry focuses on work that has been done in K–12 education only.
Classroom observations have long been a primary component of teacher evaluation, a process that was intended to both support employment-related decisions and provide feedback to teachers to improve their instruction. Typically, principals or other school administrators would observe teachers once a year as they taught their class. Such observations were often required and specified by statute and/or labor contracts. The observer would usually make ...
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